1999 Deconstructed (2013) Russell J. Chartier, video
Paul J. Botelho, music
The video aspect of the piece, through layered and often opposing imagery representative of the artist's experiences in the year 1999, is intended to provoke a gestalten experience from the viewer. The video component exploits the artifacts that are inherent to the video medium as a conscious deconstruction of the medium itself. Various techniques, including varying of frame rates and aspect ratios, rescanning, and large-scale feedback loops achieved through satellite manipulation, contribute to the deconstruction process. The video is layered with different encoding versions (NTSC, PAL, and SEACAM) which results in a single unified piece that is uniquely experienced dependent on the locale where it is viewed.
The musical component of this work centers around an ascending melodic fragment which is presented through distressed piano recordings. Viola da gamba, voice, and environmental recordings along with sounds found in the composer's archive that date from the year 1999 are collaged together to form a tapestry upon which various transformations of the piano fragment are set upon. This juxtaposition, of the tapestry and the piano line which tirelessly struggles in its ascension, acts as a metaphor for the continued hope and promise which lies beyond 1999.
An important aspect of the collaboration between Russell J. Chartier and Paul J. Botelho is the principle of synchronicity. The video artist and the composer never work directly with one another’s work during the collaboration. Only the specific duration of the piece is agreed upon and no other communication in regard to the work is made during the collaboration. Solely upon the completion of both the video and music components is the work realized. The artists call this process a collective subconscious, a term which refers not only to the exclusionary creative actions which take place in their collaborative effort, but more broadly as the commonality that permeates betwixt the artists and those close to them.
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